We have been getting a lot of questions from our readers locally and abroad about the Current CBN policy on exchange rate. Some of these questions cover issues such as can i withdraw dollars? Can I transfer dollars? Can I import dollars etc. So, in this article we will attempt to answer some of the pertinent questions people tend to ask us.
Can I buy dollars from the black market?
The CBN does not regulate the black market (also called the parallel market) as such you can buy dollars from the black market
Can I buy dollars from the bank
You can buy dollars from banks or any authorised dealers so far what you need it for is eligible.
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Can I sell dollars
You can still sell your dollars to BDCs, black market or to banks. You can even sell to the CBN. There are no restrictions provided you have a buyer.
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Can I pay dollars into my domiciliary accounts?
The CBN did not restrict deposit of dollars into your domiciliary account. However, some banks reject physical deposit of dollars into domiciliary accounts.
How can I deposit money into my domiciliary account?
If your banks rejects physical deposit of dollars into your account you have the option to have it wired into your account either via an interbank transfer or from an account abroad
Can I withdraw dollars from my account?
You can withdraw dollars from your account. However, this depends on whether the bank has enough dollars to pay you in a timely manner. Also withdrawals of dollars deposited into your account after August can still be paid in dollars on in Naira
Can I transfer dollars out of my account
You may not be allowed to transfer money out of your account If the dollars sitting in your account was deposited physically. However, if the dollars was wired to you, then you ca transfer it without restriction.
Can I travel abroad with my dollars?
You can travel abroad with your dollars. However, you will have to declare it at the immigration at your point of exit out of Nigeria if it is above $10,000
What if it is above $10,000?
You will have to explain how you made the extra
Can I use my Naira ATM Cards Abroad?
You can use your Naira ATM cards abroad. However, this is restricted to a maximum of $10,000 a month (but you can’t have more than $50,000 per annum). This applies to paying via P.O.S transactions, online purchases etc.
Can I withdraw dollars on foreign ATM’s using my Naira debit card?
You can make withdrawals but not more than $300 per day. This also attracts some charges which can range between 1 to 5%.
What exchange rate will the bank use when using my Naira debit card to buy dollars?
The banks use the interbank rate plus a premium and charges. Some banks are alleged to be using the black market rate as the rate of exchange. It can be quite expensive. For example, if the Interbank rate is N205/$1 banks can charge N215/$1
I need dollars to pay for my imports. How do I go about it
If your imports are not included in the banned list then you can apply for forex through your bank by filling a Form A for invincible transactions and Form M for visible transactions. However, if that is not the case then you only have the $10,000 a month option. Some importers have several bank accounts and can leverage on that to access more than $10,000. However, the CBN’s BVN project may soon make that impossible.
How do I pay for school fees and my child’s maintenance
The CBN says you can access dollars to pay for children school fees and or student maintenance allowances. To get the dollars all you need to do is walk up to your bank and show proof. For e.g school fees, tuition etc. The bank is expected to sell the dollars to you once you provide these documents.
What about BTA and PTA?
This also applies. If you are traveling and need dollars you should approach your bank with a copy of your passport and visa as well as tickets. You may also need a letter from company as proof that it is a business travel. PTA & BTA are typically not more than $5,000
If I import dollars into Nigeria can I get dollars back when I want to take it out
If you import dollars into Nigeria either as a portfolio investments or foreign direct investment you can access dollars from the official market when you want to repatriate your money. However, this can only happen if you sell the dollars to the CBN at the time you imported the dollars. When you sell to CBN at official rate via your bank you are given a certificate of capital importation which you will represent to the CBN when you want to sell. The CBN will approve sale to you when you want to repatriate at the official exchange rate.
When will this policy end?
The CBN did not mention when all these restrictions will end. However, ending or relaxing the polcies all depend on the price of oil and Nigeria’s external reserve. If they both remain stable and show sign of strengthening then the CBN may reconsider some of these stiff policies.